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Maryland Intellectual Property Legal Resource Center Moves to UM

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Legal Services Provider to be Headquartered in Mtech's TAP Incubator

College Park, MD -- The Maryland Intellectual Property Legal Resource Center (MIPLRC), which offers free legal services on intellectual property and related matters to entrepreneurs and emerging technology companies and explores relevant legal, ethical and policy issues in the high technology and intellectual property areas, is moving to the University of Maryland, College Park on September 1, university officials announce today.

The center, a joint initiative of the University of Maryland School of Law, the Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development, and now the Maryland Technology Enterprise Institute (Mtech), will be headquartered at the Technology Advancement Program (TAP) incubator, the state's first business incubator established in 1985.

MIPLRC's legal services will be available at no charge to university faculty and students, as well as to regional entrepreneurs and startup companies.

"One of the most common obstacles confronting entrepreneurs is an inability to properly protect their intellectual property and legal rights due to lack of knowledge or lack of funds," says Patricia Campbell, Law School Associate Professor and MIPLRC Director. "MIPLRC helps to eliminate those obstacles, and relocating to TAP will bring the center's valuable services directly to the vibrant community of technology entrepreneurs at the University of Maryland."

"A comprehensive and affordable offering of legal expertise and services is every bit as important to creating great new university ventures as unique technology, business mentoring, and seed funding," says Dean Chang, Director of Mtech's venture and education programs and Director of TAP. "The MIPLRC is an ideal legal entree for any University of Maryland entrepreneur just starting a company on a limited budget, and the center perfectly complements and can naturally transition these entrepreneurs when they are ready for the practices of seasoned attorneys at Mtech's partner law firms like Fish & Richardson P.C. and Nixon Peabody LLP."

University of Maryland School of Law students provide the center's legal services, working under the supervision of experienced faculty members and other practitioners. Types of services routinely provided include:

  • General counseling on all areas of intellectual property law, including patents, trade secrets, copyrights, and trademarks and service marks. Students provide advice and education on issues such as the requirements for obtaining a patent; preparation of detailed invention disclosures; requirements for trademark and copyright registration; maintenance of trade secrets; keeping a laboratory notebook; domain name registration; impact of public disclosures; and obtaining foreign patent protection.
  • Assisting in the preparation, filing and prosecution of trademark and service mark applications.
  • Assisting in the preparation and filing of copyright registrations.
  • Undertaking limited patent and prior art searches.
  • Assistance in the preparation of various agreements, such as nondisclosure agreements, employment and consulting agreements, and licenses.
  • Providing basic counseling on business entity selection and formation.

The center was created in 2002 to educate law students, entrepreneurs, and the community about the legal aspects of intellectual property. It was previously located at the Maryland Technology Development Center in Rockville, Md.

MIPLRC also offers academic courses for credit to law students and presents workshops and lectures on intellectual property issues of interest to start-up companies.

For more information on the center, visit:

About Mtech's Technology Advancement Program (TAP) (

For over 20 years, TAP has helped entrepreneurs build some of the most successful technology companies in the mid-Atlantic region. TAP's staff is comprised of seasoned veterans of startups and venture capital firms who provide business advice and support, market intelligence, introductions, access to funding and other critical assistance that can accelerate the growth of technology ventures. TAP offers furnished offices and flexible lab space as well as a multitude of other benefits and services that can only be found at a technology business incubator situated right on the campus of one of the nation's top public universities, the University of Maryland. TAP was the first technology business incubator in the state of Maryland and is the birthplace of two of Maryland's billion dollar companies: Gaithersburg-based Digene Corporation (now part of Qiagen) and Columbia-based Martek Biosciences.

About the Mtech (

The mission of the Maryland Technology Enterprise Institute (Mtech) is tri-fold: educate the next generation of technology entrepreneurs; help entrepreneurs create successful technology-based ventures; and connect Maryland companies with university resources to help them succeed. Founded in 1983, Mtech has had a $19.6 billion cumulative impact on the Maryland economy through its programs. Mtech is a unit of the A. James Clark School of Engineering at the University of Maryland.

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